Finding a thin layer of dust on surfaces throughout your home not long after doing a deep cleaning can certainly be frustrating. The question is, why does it happen?
Believe it or not, one of the key causes of that annoying layer of dust could be your forced-air home heating or cooling equipment (if you have vents rather than baseboard heaters or radiators, you have a forced-air system). The good news is, if that’s the case, is that there are some easy ways to fix the problem.
Here are five ways you can minimize dust in your home:
Clean smarter. Vacuum floors using a HEPA filter vacuum once a week, and mop hardwood floors with white vinegar and water. The goal here is to reduce the burden on your HVAC filters (see #2), which will improve airflow in your home.
Change air filters regularly. Over time, an air conditioner’s air filter will clog with efficiency-robbing dust and debris – a problem that will eventually lead to problems that are more difficult (and costly) to address than a simple dust problem (costly HVAC repairs, for example). Check your air filter a minimum of once per month during peak cooling (and heating) season, replacing it when necessary. Be sure to know the best MERV (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value) rating for your equipment: a higher MERV rating will block more dust, but you pay for that dust-blocking power with a slight loss of operating efficiency (and a higher cost for your replacement filter).
Consider professional duct sealing. Holes or cracks in your ductwork can draw dust into your home – unfortunately, many of those cracks and holes can’t be easily seen. To solve the problem and reduce the amount of dust circulating in your house, you need professional duct sealing – an investment that could be worthwhile, considering that anywhere from 10 to 15 percent of the air you pay to cool or heat also gets lost via duct leaks.
Keep proper humidity levels. Dust flows freely through dry air – which means it will travel much farther through an HVAC system in an over-dry home. Properly humidified air – produced with the help of a high-quality whole house humidifier – can reduce the movement of dust in your ducts, and throughout your home.